It is still wet in “Gray Paree.” We got rained out last night on connecting with Jeanna and Richard, friends from Washington State who were in town for the day. Jean’s cold is lingering and we didn’t think it was a good idea to wander the city in the rain at night.
Between showers during the day we managed a few hours at the nearby Cimetiere Du Pere Lachaise, one of the most famous cemetaries in this city. Paris’ graveyards are interesting on many levels: they are marvelous park-like spaces filled with trees, flowers, and walking lanes; they have some of the most beautiful (and public) scultures in all of Paris; and they are the final resting places for so many famous people. We overheard one girl questioning her mother’s “morbid” desire to walk through and photograph a cemetary. Her mother just enjoyed the beautiful work on grave monuments.
Our first quest was in search of the graves of as many famous artists as we could locate. There is a map with general locations, but when you get in the area you just have to walk up, down, over, and through the monuments to find the one you seek. We did manage to find Gustave Caillebotte, Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, Honore Daumier, Jacques Louis David, Eugene Delacroix, Theodore Gericault, Georges Seurat, Dominique Ingres, and Amedeo Modigliani. We failed to locate Camille Pissarro despite finding another Pissarro family in the same area. We also found Charles Francois Daubigny, who isn’t list in the cemetary’s list of famous residents!
We found a few other favorites along the way: Marcel Proust, Oscar Wilde (a monument scarred with graffity), Simone Signoret and Yves Montand (together in eternity), Edith Piaf (The Little Sparrow), Heloise and Abelard, Victor Hugo, and last (but not least) Jim Morrison (of The Doors for those who weren’t here for or don’t remember the ’60s or Light My Fire). Here’s a sampling of photos. We will try to post more of the sculpture and architecture (particularly the doors) as we edit more photos.